Note: Click graphic to enlarge.

Much has changed since our last PD Composite post on Friday. As suggested then, we had not seen the full impact of Rick Santorum’s sweep of non-binding Colorado, Missouri, and Minnesota. In the three polls released since the last PD Composite, Santorum is surging, putting him in a virtual tie with Mitt Romney. At the same time, Newt Gingrich’s time is likely up.

However, in this race of extreme volatility, it may be Romney who snatches back a certain amount of momentum in the coming polls due to his win in Maine and symbolic victory at the CPAC straw poll. Meanwhile, Ron Paul needed a win in Maine more than any of the other candidates, if only for survival at this point in the race. But, in reality, Dr. Paul has never broken 17 percent in the PD Composite, has no momentum, is now trending downward in most polls, and is unlikely to be competitive again.